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AF de Tulsa Celebrates Tenth Year of Free French Concerts in 2019

The travel expenses of selected musicians who closely match the AF de Tulsa educational mission to promote the French language and culture are fully funded by members of the community through donations to AF de Tulsa. If you are interested in sponsoring future free French concerts, please pay through our online “DONATE” link

Over the past 12 years, the Alliance Française de Tulsa has hosted 30 free French concerts at various schools and universities, cafés, and events. The goal of these performances is to promote the French language and culture to students and the community. Six different musicians have come to Tulsa with the sponsorship of AF de Tulsa, ranging from a cabaret-style singer to a violinist to a few singer/songwriters.

Concerts were first held in 2007 with Frenchman Eric Vincent, whose style captivated students two years in a row. In 2009, Brice Kappel performed at Thoreau Demonstration Academy. In 2010, Kyle Dillingham, a talented violinist, gave free concerts at both Thoreau and the Brasserie, where he played “La Vie en Rose.”

Two new French musicians came to Tulsa in 2012: Claudia Hommel, a cabaret singer who performed at Monte Casino and Union High, and Marcel Van Dam, who flew from France to play at various locations, including Thoreau, TGA’s Kid’s World, Café Conversation club, Back Alley BBQ & Blues, and the Beaujolais Nouveau event hosted by AF de Tulsa. Marcel returned in 2013 and 2014 to perform at Thoreau, University Club, The Phoenix, Union, and ORU. In 2015, Susan Herndon showcased her vocal and instrumental talents at TU, ORU, Thoreau, Cascia Hall, and Union.

In February 2019, Marcel Van Dam returned to Tulsa for his fourth sojourn, performing at TU, Jenks Middle School, Thoreau, ORU, Eisenhower International, Edison Prep, and Mother Road Market. In the schools, he performed well-known French songs, such as “Aux Champs-Elysées” and “Les Feuilles Mortes.” However, he also played many of his original works: “Eva Elle Va,” “Déstresse,” and “Ce que j’aime dans la romance,” to name a few. At the universities specifically, Marcel discussed his songwriting process and analyzed song lyrics with students of French.

A free French concert took place on the evening of March 1, 2019 at Mother Road Market. Members of the community enjoyed delicious meals by the vendors while listening to Marcel’s impressive voice and reverberating guitar. This event kicked off the “Mois de la Francophonie,” which takes place in March of each year to celebrate and promote the French language. On that day, there was also a French pop-up boutique, where AF de Tulsa sold French books and souvenirs for donations. The following day, AF de Tulsa held a “French Story Time” at Mother Road Market, and children were able to listen to children’s books read in French.

History of Free concerts for Students of French organized by AF de Tulsa

Feb 2019         Marcel Van Dam         @ TU, Jenks Middle, Thoreau, ORU, Eisenhower International; Edison Prep; Mother Road Market

Nov 2015:       Susan Herndon @ TU; ORU; Thoreau; Cascia Hall; Union

Nov 2014:      Marcel Van Dam @ Thoreau; Union; ORU

Nov 2013:       Marcel Van Dam @ Thoreau; University Club; The Phoenix

Nov 2012:       Marcel Van Dam @ Thoreau; Kid’s World; Café; Beaujoulais Nouveau ; Back Alley BBQ & Blues

Mar 2012:       Claudia Hommel (Cabaret) @ Monte Casino; Union High

Oct 2010:        Kyle Dillingham @ Thoreau; Brasserie

Oct 2009:        Brice Kappel @ Thoreau

Oct 2008:        Eric Vincent @ Thoreau

Oct 2007:        Eric Vincent @ Monte Casino


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